The Science Center Is Committed to Being an Accessible and Inclusive Community Resource

The Science Center has partnered with Center for Pediatric Therapies to provide its staff with disability-specific training. To help prepare for your visit to the Science Center, view and/or download our Social Narrative here.

Sensory Concerns

  • Light, noise, and crowds vary widely throughout the Science Center. Please consult the Social Narrative prior to your visit for all relevant sensory information.
  • Please note that the Dome provides a large amount of sensory stimulation. Guests may want to consider bringing noise-reducing headphones.

Sensory Backpacks

  • The Science Center is a fun and engaging place to visit, but sometimes the trip can be an overwhelming or stressful experience for guests with Autism Spectrum Disorder or sensory concerns. To help make the experience more accessible and enjoyable for these families, the Science Center worked with The Center for Pediatric Therapies to create sensory backpacks.
  • Each backpack includes noise-reducing earplugs, sensory fidget toys, sunglasses, a magnifying glass, and a social story to help guide your experience.
  • Sensory backpacks can be requested and picked for free from the Guest Services desk to be used during your visit. This amenity made possible thanks to support from The Community Foundation of the Dan River Region and the Junior Wednesday Club.

Quieter Times to Visit

  • Visitation will vary depending upon holidays, school vacations, weather, and special events. September, January, and February are usually less busy, quieter months of the year to visit. Wednesday is the quietest day of the week at the Science Center. In addition, weekday afternoons after 2 p.m. during the school year are often less busy, quieter times to visit.

Quieter Places and Exhibits

  • There are quieter places and exhibits throughout the Science Center. These can vary depending upon the time of day, time of year, and show schedules. Please ask Guest Services for more information when checking in.

Sensory Friendly Evenings

  • Sensory Friendly Nights are special, free evenings developed and designed for guests with disABILITIES. Guests can enjoy a less-crowded environment as you get hands on with activities that will pique the curiosity of the young to young at heart.
  • Special features include: dimmed lights, lowered sounds, audio description for films and planetarium shows, ASL interpreters at the Science Center, sensory tables, and quiet rooms.
  • We are working to bring these events back in the safest manner possible. Follow us on social media and check our events page to learn more about when these exciting events will happen throughout the year.
  • Sensory Friendly Nights are made possible thanks to generous support from The Junior Wednesday Club and The Hughes Center.

Service Animals

  • Service animals are welcome on all levels of the Science Center.